Behind us lay 140km, 2500 vertical meters, 10 days of trekking, 2 days of waiting and 2 small airplane flights. We were back in Kathmandu, and with the promise of pizza ahead of us.
After 10 days of rice, noodles and tough buffalo meat, I was allowing myself a night off from Nepalese food. Apparently the ‘thing’ to do after a Khumbu Valley trek is eat pizza at the famous Fire and Ice pizza restaurant, says J.
We showered, oh my god did we ever need it, and sorted out clothes for washing, then celebration was in order! What we’d just completed was huge! Dolled up to the nines, in the cleanest of our dirty clothes, cocktails were definitely in order and for NRP 280 ($3.50 AUD) for 2, who could say no!
Pub Maya is this great bar, right in the center of Thamel, the tourist district, but yet still void of travelers, you’d think the sign announcing cheap 2 for 1 cocktails would draw them in? After walking up a steep flight of creaky metal stairs we positioned ourselves on the balcony for prime people watching.
As like most places we visit, the server remembered J and was very chatty. We started with a recommendation, Maya Mix (below right) – gin, vodka, rum, bandy, whiskey, lemon juice, lemonade and an orange wedge, delicious!
Next was Blue Angel (left) – vodka, pineapple juice, blue curaçao, crushed ice, desiccated coconut, fresh mint, topped off with a cherry. And finally Zombie (center) – dark rum, brandy, pineapple juice, lime juice and crushed ice.
Once we were suitably sloshed, and the bill was paid, we clambered back down the metal stairs and made our way to Fire and Ice. Just on the edge of the tourist district, the clientele was a mix between locals, always a sign of good food, and travelers. The restaurant was opened by an Italian woman, Annamaria Forgione in 1995, and serves perfect Italian cuisine and coffee, a great reprieve from typical Nepali fare.
We were greeted by very attentive wait staff, a menu with 28 different pizza options, as well as pasta, lasagne and other Italian delicacies. Beers and pizza were ordered, while we waited for these to arrive, the people watching recommenced. One if my favourite things about Nepal as been watching people, locals and tourists alike. I love the colourful Saris and Kurta Salwa on the women and the men are so animated. Watching tourists always proves entertaining; the way they try to be so kind to the beggars on the street, the street sellers and markets stall owners, also the crazy array of fashions always catch my eye.
With our beer came a bottle of chilli infused olive oil, I’d watched people drizzling it onto their pizza. The pizza quickly followed. The first bite was heaven, that first taste of food that’s been in your dreams but been completely out of reach, finally satisfying a craving, crispy bacon, steamed spinach and salty cheese atop a perfectly cooked chewy pizza base.
That’s where heaven started slipping away. My mouth started to feel oily, a sensation that had become unfamiliar to me, the recognisable cramps began in my stomach, a reminder that my body has become unaccustomed to yeast (since sourdough has entered our lives) and guilt of caving to well known desire for fast foods.
Have you ever made a decision you regretted while traveling? Ever done something you wish you could change?